Rules

Secret ingredients to quality software

Do you log every error?

Last updated by Brady Stroud on 06 May 2021 03:23 am (3 months ago) See History

When you walk into a clothes store to exchange a pair of jeans, you expect to be treated with respect. The sales person should talk to you at your level, deal with your issues, and in a polite and fair way handle your problem. Developers should not expect software users to be treated any differently.

Every error message you put into your products is an opportunity for good service. Users don't want to see "Run-time error. Can't save record with zero length string", instead the User should receive a message that helps them through the situation.

Figure: Log every error

Not to say though that there is any ideal error message - a great error is one that has been eliminated! In packaged products, every unhandled error is our problem.

In the old days, unhandled errors would be stored in a local Access db, but now all unhandled errors should be automatically emailed to the product team. This is a proactive and polite approach to dealing with unhandled errors. If it's serious we will contact the client to resolve the situation - they get a bit of a surprise and think we have ESP!

Remember what it is like to have good service in a restaurant. A good waiter knows when to interrupt you, when to leave you alone and how to do it all in a courteous and respectful way.

Adam CoganAdam Cogan

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